In the coming decades, electricity's share of total global energy is expected to continue to grow, and more intelligent processes will be introduced into the electric power delivery (transmission and distribution) networks. It is envisioned that the electric power grid will move from an electromechanically controlled system to an electronically controlled network in the next two decades. A key challenge is how to redesign, retrofit, and upgrade the existing electromechanically controlled system into a smart self-healing grid that is driven by a well-designed market approach. Revolutionary developments in both information technology and materials science and engineering promise significant improvements in the security, reliability, efficiency, and cost effectiveness of electric power delivery systems. Focus areas in materials and devices include sensors, smart materials and structures, microfabrication, nanotechnology, advanced materials, and smart devices.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
oped while the authors were at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) in Palo Alto, California. We gratefully acknowledge the support and feedback from numerous colleagues at EPRI, universities, industry, and government agencies. In addition, Massoud Amin gratefully acknowledges support of his work by EPRI, NSF’s Cyber Trust, and the ORNL Sensor Net Projects.